Heart rate monitors

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davidkw
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Heart rate monitors

Post by davidkw » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:25 pm

I keep a Polar heart rate monitor in my workout bag for when I run at the gym. Well it broke. It was a 2005 model. Do heart rate monitors still require a strap around the mid section?

I have a Garmin 305 for running outside. The first 305 that I purchased I paid over $300. The second one I purchased five years ago was $37 being discontinued at Best Buy. I know a bargain when I see one. That still works fine.

For a heart rate monitor that just does the following for when at the gym: heart rate, time, and calories; any recommendations???
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jjface
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by jjface » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:37 pm

The mio link is worn around the wrist and can pair with your 305. Worked well when I had one. It won't be quite as good as a chest strap but close enough and a lot more comfortable. Costs about $50-80.

There are quite a few others too by MIO, Scorche etc.

You can get a first gen tomtom cardio runner watch for about $50-90 and that is a gps watch plus a hrm built in. That was a nice device too when I had one of those. They have a new model but I figured you are after a bargain.

Stonebr
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Stonebr » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:42 pm

Are you a professional athlete? Have a heart problem?

I've gone my whole life without a HRM. Ran marathons, cycled century rides, climbed mountains. Keep it simple.
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Tycoon
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Tycoon » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:44 pm

What part of your Polar watch broke? The battery can be replaced and a new strap can be purchased.

I have a Polar RS100 that's probably 12 years old and still going strong after replacing the watch battery twice.
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Mudpuppy
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Mudpuppy » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:47 pm

The chest strap monitors will have better accuracy than wrist based ones, from the research I did a few months ago. I didn't need too many features, so I got the $20 Jarv Run BT on Amazon, as it had good Amazon reviews, worked with my treadmill, and the price was right. It's fairly basic, but works for my needs. You can pair it to your smartphone (a variety of apps are supported) and also to fitness equipment that supports the Bluetooth 4.0 Smart protocol.

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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by stoptothink » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:50 pm

Stonebr wrote:Are you a professional athlete? Have a heart problem?

I've gone my whole life without a HRM. Ran marathons, cycled century rides, climbed mountains. Keep it simple.
It's true, heart rate training is a very mixed bag and most of it is hardly science; especially if you are counting on it to monitor caloric expenditure. That being said, they can be an effective tool if you understand their limitations. Chest straps are still more accurate than wrist monitors and you can buy a Polar unit for like $15.

Rodc
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Rodc » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:51 pm

Stonebr wrote:Are you a professional athlete? Have a heart problem?

I've gone my whole life without a HRM. Ran marathons, cycled century rides, climbed mountains. Keep it simple.
Me too.

Playing with data is fun though so I think about it from time to time.

However, I can count my pulse for 15 sec and multiply by 4 any time I want, though need to slow for a few moments if pushing really hard. In short order I learned to correlate level of effort, how I feel, very accurately with pulse. I do not get a record, but if I am targeting a certain range of HR I can easily do so.

And from what I have read, since I was tempted to buy one, these consumer grade HR monitors are not very accurate. So in the end I have not purchased one.

So, if you do buy one you might look into finding one that is actually accurate.
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TimeRunner
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by TimeRunner » Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:17 pm

I probably went thru 5 Garmin 305's for running and cycling. (I even cracked one open and filled it with silicon sealant to keep it going another year.) Finally switched to a Suunto ("Sun Toe", made in Finland) Ambit3 Vertical for swim, bike, run stuff. Pretty happy with it. High quality build and better software than Garmin. Probably overkill for just the gym, but nicely designed and built if you are looking for a solid device. Ambit3 line is often on sale due to newer product releases. See http://www.dcrainmaker.com/ for buyers guide, product descriptions, etc. He's slightly Garmin biased, so keep that in mind, IMO. :beer
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harrychan
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by harrychan » Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:28 pm

I just got the mi band 2 for $30USD. Waiting for it to arrive. I'll let you know how it goes. The sensor is on the band and detects heart rate on your wrist.
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telemark
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by telemark » Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:47 pm

I had heart surgery a year ago. Since then I've started wearing a Mio Fuse when I exercise. You wear it a little farther up the forearm than a wristwatch, but it seems accurate enough, compared to my pulse oximeter. You need their app to set it up (I used a Nexus 7 tablet) but after that you can either pair it with a smartthing or just use it in standalone mode.

bayview
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by bayview » Fri Aug 05, 2016 10:10 pm

Rodc wrote:
Stonebr wrote:Are you a professional athlete? Have a heart problem?

I've gone my whole life without a HRM. Ran marathons, cycled century rides, climbed mountains. Keep it simple.
Me too.

Playing with data is fun though so I think about it from time to time.

However, I can count my pulse for 15 sec and multiply by 4 any time I want, though need to slow for a few moments if pushing really hard. In short order I learned to correlate level of effort, how I feel, very accurately with pulse. I do not get a record, but if I am targeting a certain range of HR I can easily do so.

And from what I have read, since I was tempted to buy one, these consumer grade HR monitors are not very accurate. So in the end I have not purchased one.

So, if you do buy one you might look into finding one that is actually accurate.
+1

It seems like we're all feeling compelled these days to monitor things that chugged along perfectly well in the background. There's this ubiquitous OMG factor going on that tries to make us think that if we don't monitor normal human behavior, Bad Stuff will happen.

The big problem with any kind of research and monitoring is that ethically, researchers can't let strange numbers go without intervention. So we really don't have a good database to interpret fetal heart monitoring and all the rest of it. Instead, we do lotsa Caesarean sections and whatnot, just because we are looking at some numbers that we really don't know how to interpret, and everyone's afraid that they might get sued. Who knows if the numbers gathered by a (what might not be a terribly well regulated) device actually mean anything?

If you don't have risk factors, free yourself from this particular gadget.
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davidkw
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by davidkw » Sat Aug 06, 2016 9:16 am

I have no heart problems, but just like keep track of my heart rate as a training tool.
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lightheir
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by lightheir » Sat Aug 06, 2016 9:22 am

bayview wrote:
Rodc wrote:
Stonebr wrote:Are you a professional athlete? Have a heart problem?

I've gone my whole life without a HRM. Ran marathons, cycled century rides, climbed mountains. Keep it simple.
Me too.

Playing with data is fun though so I think about it from time to time.

However, I can count my pulse for 15 sec and multiply by 4 any time I want, though need to slow for a few moments if pushing really hard. In short order I learned to correlate level of effort, how I feel, very accurately with pulse. I do not get a record, but if I am targeting a certain range of HR I can easily do so.

And from what I have read, since I was tempted to buy one, these consumer grade HR monitors are not very accurate. So in the end I have not purchased one.

So, if you do buy one you might look into finding one that is actually accurate.
+1

It seems like we're all feeling compelled these days to monitor things that chugged along perfectly well in the background. There's this ubiquitous OMG factor going on that tries to make us think that if we don't monitor normal human behavior, Bad Stuff will happen.

The big problem with any kind of research and monitoring is that ethically, researchers can't let strange numbers go without intervention. So we really don't have a good database to interpret fetal heart monitoring and all the rest of it. Instead, we do lotsa Caesarean sections and whatnot, just because we are looking at some numbers that we really don't know how to interpret, and everyone's afraid that they might get sued. Who knows if the numbers gathered by a (what might not be a terribly well regulated) device actually mean anything?

If you don't have risk factors, free yourself from this particular gadget.

I'm not held prisoner to my HRM, but of all my gadgets other than a basic digital watch, the one accessory I would value above all others (by far) would be my HRM. Over my powermeter. I actually like that it takes at least 10sec to reflect increased HR to increased activity - it's just more stable a metric for me and more useful as it incorporates conditions like temp, etc.

That said, I do most of my workouts still without an HRM - I'm usually on a gym treadmill or gym bike. (Ok, the TM gives periodic HRM data when I grab the bars, and it's def interesting and helpful.)

Traveler
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Traveler » Sat Aug 06, 2016 10:01 am

I've had a Polar F6 for about 8 years and it's worked fine. I think it was ~$80 when I bought it but I think they're much cheaper now.

leonard
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by leonard » Sat Aug 06, 2016 10:02 am

After using an HRM for a while for actual training - I found I didn't need it after a couple months. I could tell what HR range I was in just by level of exertion and feel. When I put the HRM back on to test - I was within a 10 bpm range of where I thought I was. Close enough and I got to wear the annoying chest strap much less.

EDIT: one place where the HRM is very valuable is taking HR first thing in the morning when tired. Morning HR can be indicative of overall health and an elevated HR can be a sign of over training. Much easier than trying to manually take HR in the morning.
Last edited by leonard on Sat Aug 06, 2016 10:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by livesoft » Sat Aug 06, 2016 10:04 am

bayview wrote:If you don't have risk factors, free yourself from this particular gadget.
One might as well free themselves from other gadgets, too, such as a watch and anything that might measure distance or calories or effort. :twisted:

My point is that these things are all pretty innocuous.

I have a Garmin HRM and use a Garman FR70 watch and footpod and bicycle attachment, too. I have had interesting conversations when people noticed my Garmin watch, but not when I wear an expensive watch.
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chuckb84
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by chuckb84 » Sat Aug 06, 2016 10:21 am

I use a Garmin Edge 705 both for cycling and in the gym for workouts with weights. The device has been very robust and the HR data is invaluable for understanding what your workout really was. I recommend.

davidkw
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by davidkw » Sat Aug 06, 2016 11:37 am

Right now the
Timex Men's Ironman Target Trainer Digital Heart Rate Monitor Watch, Resin Strap + Chest Strap Sensor
looks like a great buy.

Anyone have a Timex?
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Bylo Selhi » Sat Aug 06, 2016 12:12 pm

harrychan wrote:I just got the mi band 2 for $30USD. Waiting for it to arrive. I'll let you know how it goes. The sensor is on the band and detects heart rate on your wrist.
I've had the previous 1S model for about 8 months now. Battery life is incredible. I get over a month on one charge.

Neither Mi Band 1S and 2--or rather the Mi Fit app--do continuous HR measurement. Using the Mi Fit app you can only do one-off readings even though the hardware is capable. If you want to continuous HR measurement you'll need a third-party app like Tools & Mi Band [Android] et al.

Placement of the sensor is critical. If it's in a poor position or if it moves during measurement then you'll get spurious results.
For me the best placement is about an inch above the wrist. Also the band has to be rather tight--almost uncomfortable--on the wrist so it doesn't move. When I do that readings from my 1S are consistent with readings from a Polar H7 chest strap which I consider the "gold standard" of consumer grade HR measurement.

For more information on Mi Bands see the active subgroup on Reddit.

Also if you have an Android phone, be sure to explore Mi Fit integration with Google Fit.

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Toons
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Toons » Sat Aug 06, 2016 12:52 pm

Fitbit works for me
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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Bylo Selhi » Sat Aug 06, 2016 1:00 pm

Xiaomi Mi Band 1S Heart Rate Wristband works for me. And it costs only $15 ;)

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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by Mudpuppy » Sat Aug 06, 2016 2:46 pm

davidkw wrote:I have no heart problems, but just like keep track of my heart rate as a training tool.
The Jarv Run BT is currently $20 on Amazon. Online side-by-side reviews with more expensive models show that it's about the same level of accuracy as the more expensive items. If you want a bargain, I'd say that's your bargain item, as long as you're okay with getting another chest-band model.

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Re: Heart rate monitors

Post by powermega » Sun Aug 07, 2016 8:01 am

DW gave me a FitBt Surge over a year ago. I had previously been using a Garmin 305. I'm very happy with the Surge and pretty much wear it all of the time. I like being able to see how I slept, including restlessness and sleeping heart rate. The wrist-measured HR is not as accurate as the chest-measured HR, but all of these consumer monitors have a certain inaccuracy. Like others have said above, you have to have a certain sense of your own exertion level and not rely on any HR monitor to tell you what you're going too hard.
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